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WEEKEND EDITION: Sunday and its countdown to showtime!...MEN FROM MAINE: Bored of Directors: ARRL... Cops: Maine man punches self in face to avoid sobriety test......DUI arrest: Tampa man mistakes bank drive-through for Taco Bell.....The province is investigating after video of a grizzly bear eating ice cream at a Dairy Queen restaurant in Innisfail surfaced online earlier this week......Politically correct.........

FCC Announces Plans for Partial Government Shutdown

The FCC has issued a brief statement regarding its plans in the event of a partial government shutdown, which could start on January 20.

“In the event of a partial government shutdown, because of available funding, the Federal Communications Commission plans to remain open and pay staff at least through the close of business on Friday, January 26,” the FCC said.

This means the FCC will continue to accept and process Amateur Radio license applications and grants at least for another week. During the 16-day 2013 government shutdown, the FCC retained eight employees “to conduct interference detection, mitigation, and disaster response operations.” Only one “senior management official” was left in the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau — which oversees Amateur Radio.
 

Peter, Leo, Roger, Barry, Scott, Mic, Joe, and infamous Warren, leader of the Bull Pack.nI hope Famous Dave's BBQ is ready for this crew.....Kriss taking the photo..

Well I see they picked up a young lady, God Bless her....

 

Do It Yourself* HF Tuner Kit! 1.8-30MHz, 300W, cross-needle meter, MFJ Versa Tuner ...$119.00...who knew they sold kits?
Ever wondered how a manual tuner works? Miss the days when you could buy Do-It-Yourself kits to build cool electronics for amateur radio?
This MFJ-941EK Kit is the MFJ-941E Versa Tuner complete parts list BEFORE FINAL ASSEMBLY!!
This makes an excellent intermediate project for a new ham, or a great way for an experienced Amateur to save money by completing the final assembly himself (/herself)!
** Some Assembly Required ** On the tuner, once it's built:
The MFJ-941E gives you a 300 Watt antenna tuner that covers everything from 1.8 - 30 MHz -- plus you get a lighted Cross-Needle meter with on/off switch, antenna switch and a 4:1 balun! (The light uses 12 VDC or 110 VAC with MFJ-1312D)
MFJ's lighted Cross-Needle meter shows SWR, forward and reflected power all at a glance in 300/60 and 30/6 watt ranges, 8 position antenna switch lets you select 2 coax lines, random wire/balanced line or dummy load (direct or through).
An efficient 12 position air wound inductor gives lower losses and more power out. Has 4:1 balun, 1000 Volt capacitors. The beautiful aluminum cabinet has a durable scratch-proof multicolor Lexan front panel matches your rig perfectly and fits right into your station.

Information for deployments to Shit Hole countries

Past deployed Veterans can relate to this!

1. If your boss tells you to update your Gamma Globulin, Yellow Fever, Malaria, Dysentery, Tetanus and other fun immunizations - You might be deploying to a Shit Hole.

2. If the Mobilization Officer tells you not to waste your time bringing a radio, or any other electronics, as there is no electricity and there are no signals - You might be deploying to a Shit Hole.

3. If the Travel Pay folks give you a travel advance and the Per Diem rate is only $8.00/day, for everything - You might be deploying to a Shit Hole.

4. If the “Area Cultural” briefing is only 30 minutes long, but the briefing on communicable diseases is 3 hours long - You might be deploying to a Shit Hole.

5. If the “Area Cultural” briefing includes facts that some leaders in the host country keep young boys as sexual slaves – You might be deploying to a Shit Hole.

6. If the “Area Cultural” briefing includes facts that male members of that society have multiple wives, but also engage in sexual activity with barnyard animals - You might be deploying to a Shit Hole.

7. If the “Medical Briefing” includes recommendations not to walk barefoot, drink the local water, or eat ANY food on the local economy - You might be deploying to a Shit Hole.

8. If the “Medical Briefing” includes information that the roadside ditches not only serve as flood control, but also as a common latrine - You might be deploying to a Shit Hole.

9. If the Daily Report for your new assignment includes an area for “Number of Personnel Med-Evaced” from theater for unknown diseases - You might be deploying to a Shit Hole.

10. If the monetary exchange rate is greater than 50 to 1 for local currency to US Dollars - You might be deploying to a Shit Hole.

New Chinese Zhou Enlai Student Satellite Set to Launch

The 2U Zhou Enlai CubeSat, developed with primary and middle school students in China, is expected to launch on January 19. The satellite is named after the first Premier of the People’s Republic of China, who held office from 1949 until 1976. A report on the official Xinhua Net website said the CubeSat, constructed at Huai’an Youth Comprehensive Development Base in Jiangsu Province, has been transported to Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center, where a CZ-11 solid-fuel rocket will put it into orbit Friday

“Twenty teenagers who participated in the development project accompanied the transport group to the launch center and will witness the lift-off,” Xinhua said

The satellite appears to be the HA-1 satellite coordinated with the International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) to carry an Amateur Radio FM voice transponder and aerospace science education projects. According to the IARU Amateur Satellite Coordination pages, the HA-1 CubeSat is equipped with an Amateur Radio repeater and slow-scan television (SSTV) component, with an SSTV beacon that will post date, time, temperature, and location information on an SSTV frame.

The satellite has a downlink in the band 435-438 MHz, and an uplink in the band 144-146 MHz. Telemetry will be 9.6 k BPSK on 437.350 MHz. The FM voice downlink will be on 436.950 MHz, and the uplink is 145.930 MHz. 

Amateur Radio Newsline Report 2099 for Friday, January 19, 2018

BREAKING NEWS: ARRL CEO TOM GALLAGHER NY2RF RESIGNS

PAUL/ANCHOR: We begin this week with breaking news. As Amateur Radio Newsline went to production and on the eve of the ARRL board of directors meeting, Tom Gallagher NY2RF, the league's CEO, announced his retirement effective March 2. He told the ARRL that the new federal tax law's impact makes him reluctant to continue working in the state of Connecticut, where the league is headquartered. Tom is credited with, among other things, assisting the league in achieving a turnaround in its finances. A former financial services exec and investment banker, he has been a licensed ham since 1966. We will be following the league's search for his replacement.
(ARRL)

FOR BOATERS, IT'S RADIO TO THE RESCUE

PAUL/ANCHOR: We now hear an example of amateur radio doing what it does best: Neil Rapp WB9VPG brings us this dramatic story of a ham radio net and a sailboat rescue off the coast of Jamaica.

NEIL'S REPORT: This was one of those times when all that practice paid off. As ham radio operators, we often spend time communicating on our favorite modes and participating in our favorite activities. But the Maritime Mobile Service Net recently had the unfortunate need to make use of their preparation. It’s just another example of the phrase from the bumper sticker, “Ham Radio Saves Lives.” On January 4, net control Ken Porter, AC0ML, received an emergency call on the net’s usual frequency, 14.300. Jim Matusiak, VE0KMP, and his wife were aboard the sailing vessel “Solar Flair” dealing with high winds. Jim reported that the ship had lost the two head sails, and was operating only with the main sail. Ken informed them that the net would be listening in case there were any additional problems. The next day, the main sail was also damaged, and the ship’s motor wouldn’t start. Both Jim and his wife were exhausted and needed to be rescued. Assistant Net Manager Jeff Savasta, KB4JKL, tells us the rest.

JEFF: With the help of additional net control stations here on the Maritime Net, we were able to in fact effect a successful rescue via the Jamaican Coast Guard ship HMJS Middlesex that was dispatched to the area and they came on frequency. They actually came on frequency on 14.300 to speak with both AC0ML and the Solar Flair to confirm the positions. And, they’re not licensed amateurs. But of course, in times of emergency, they can come on at anytime. Or, any station can come on at anytime if it’s a declared emergency.

NEIL: The rescue was completed, and everyone is just fine thanks to the help of all who assisted. The net is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year and meets on 14.300 daily from 1700 to 0200 UTC. Jeff sums up the purpose of the maritime net.

JEFF: Our agency motto is “Where emergency communications is a commitment.” And, I think this really exemplifies the fact that the Maritime Mobile Service Network operates daily to just listen for these types of emergencies. And, we’re there serving the public since 1968. And like a lot of the operators who rely on us for this service have said many, many times… “It’s our lifeline." And it truly is.

RADIO'S A STAR IN BBC DOCUMENTARY SERIES


PAUL/ANCHOR: A BBC TV series about British railways has got an unlikely co-star - amateur radio - as we hear from Jeremy Boot G4NJH.

JEREMY: What's almost as good as listening to amateur radio? How about watching amateur radio on TV? The BBC's "Great British Railway Journeys" series showcased amateur radio earlier this month in two of the program's segments, 20 minutes into the narrative. Journalist Michael Portillo, host of the documentary series, talks with Keith Matthew G0WYS of the Poldhu Amateur Radio Club about Marconi's transatlantic signal and later in Cornwall gets on the air with Brian Coleman G4NNS at the Goonhilly Earth Station using EME to bounce CW and SSB signals off the surface of the moon.

Southgate Amateur Radio News notes that this was actually Michael Portillo's second adventure in amateur radio. In 2014, he got a lesson in how to operate in Morse Code from Peter Watkins M0BHY while at Chelmsford, Essex.

Meanwhile, if you missed the railway program, the show will remain available on the BBC website for viewers in the UK until the end of the month.

AM RALLY CELEBRATES THE ORIGINAL PHONE MODE

PAUL/ANCHOR: If you want to rack up the contacts in AM mode, don't turn back the clock, simply adjust a few settings on your rig - as we hear from Skeeter Nash N5ASH.

SKEETER's REPORT: Last year's AM Rally was so much fun that the organizers have decided to bring it back. On the weekend of February 2nd through 4th, the rally will mix operating nostalgia for oldtimers and give newer hams a chance at adventure in a completely different mode. AM, often considered the original amateur radio voice mode, is friendly to all radios from military and boat anchors to home brew and broadcast - including the newest SDR models as well as vintage radios with tubes. If your radio can run full carrier amplitude modulation, you can be in it to win it. Activity will be on the HF bands except for 60 meters.

Rally spokesman Clark Burgard, N1BCG, one of the organizers, said that the goal is simple: to demonstrate that AM is alive and well and that yes, it still works.

There'll be plenty of opportunity for certificates of recognition with categories such as most states contacted to most total contacts - all in five different classes of power output. If you hear the call "CQ, AM Rally," go for it.

For more details and to download a simple logging program for the event, visit the website at amrally dot com (amrally.com). Logs are due no later than the 14th of February.

FOR BLIND AMATEUR, THE GIFT OF A TALKING RIG


PAUL/ANCHOR: Amateur radio is truly a hobby with something for everyone, even those with physical challenges, as our own Hap Holly KC9RP knows, and as Kelly Stanfield, W-Zero-YQG recently found out. Like Hap, Stanfield is blind. However, she was introduced to ham radio by a friend, who had something in common:

STANFIELD: A visually-impared friend of mine named Craig Martin had me out to his house in the early 2000’s just to visit and he showed me some of his radios and I’m like, “blind people can do this? Cool!” And then my grandpa challenged me in 2008 that if I passed my Technician, he’d get my radio for me. And that’s my TM-V71a that I still have and use today.

PAUL: Stanfield, who has been blind all her life, said that she was able to study for her exams using Handi-Hams lectures that she took with her everywhere as MP3s on her phone. She joined the Benton County, Missouri ARES chapter and the Twin Lakes Amateur Radio Club. When she passed her General, some members of both ARES and the club came up with an idea to surprise Stanfield:

STANFIELD: And they surprised me to all get-out! I had no clue. I had just been chatting with people at the October meeting and said, “Hey, I just passed the General and I know what radio is recommended for me as a blind user - the Kenwood TS-590.” I was just chatting. Next thing I know, come the December meeting I find out that Craig and my Uncle Joe, who is also a ham - KR0UT - were there, and I’m going, “OK, something is up if these guys made a two-hour drive…”

Then they took me and showed me what people in the club had put together money to get, which was my TS-590! I had seen one that a friend had when I was up taking the class and I said to Sam, “Could this be? Are you serious?” and she said, “Yes, it is!”

As far as I was concerned, Christmas was done.

PAUL: Now two Kenwood radios equipped with factory voice-synthesis boards let her radios talk to her even as she talks to other hams. Amateur radio is connecting Stanfield to a whole new world, and thanks to the kindness and generosity of hams helping a fellow ham, she’s well on her way.

'YL-OM CONTEST' IS NO WAR OF THE SEXES


PAUL/ANCHOR: Now here's a twist on boy-meets-girl. It's ham-meets-ham and we'll let Geri Goodrich KF5KRN explain.

GERI's REPORT: Let's face it: OMs are almost always out there in search of a good YL -- and it seems a lot of YLs often can't resist a good OM.

If you are thinking this is a prelude to hearts and flowers however think again: We're talking about the YL-OM contest so the real nitty-gritty here is all about signal reports and points. Between the 9th and 11th of February, a benevolent battle of the sexes known as the YL-OM Contest will enliven SSB, CW and digital modes.

It's being run by the YLRL - the Young Ladies Radio League - and its popularity has been proven through the years. It's a pursuit that is as old as Adam and Eve perhaps except neither one of them had radios. In this contest, YLs count OMs and OMs count YLs -- and everyone counts.

For more details, visit ylrl dot org (ylrl.org)

SOTA ACCOMPLISHMENTS CLIMB TO THE HEIGHTS


PAUL/ANCHOR: Enthusiasts of Summits on the Air climbed to great heights in 2017 and Ed Durrant DD5LP has this summary.

ED'S REPORT: As a review of what has happened in the worldwide Summits on the Air program during 2017, the SOTA management team publicity officer Tom Read, M1EYP has put out a series of emails, which I will summarize.

Tom's first highlight, which attracted some publicity in the amateur radio press, was an activation by Colin Evans M1BUU, who, to break the magic 1,000-point "mountain goat" level, took a Rockmite CW transceiver kit and tools with him and actually built the equipment on the 2,415 feet high Whernside summit, soldering all the components together in the wind shade of a tent, before making the needed contacts.

Tom's second highlight was a personal one, where he and his son Jimmy M0HGY became only the fourth and fifth activators to complete activation of all SOTA summits in Northern Ireland - well done to both of you in completing this 14-year-long mission.

The SOTA scheme awards the "Sherpa" award each year to the amateur who the management team judge to have helped in the expansion of the scheme. This year it was Guru EA2IF from Spain who received the award of a SOTABeams WSPRLite unit for all the assistance he has given to help with the classification of new associations both in Europe and South America. Let me add my personal congratulations to Guru who is ALWAYS there as a chaser when I activate and nearly every weekend is out himself activating a summit. One of the "Stammtisch" of European operators.

Following nicely on from the piece about Guru, a list of the Fifteen new SOTA associations that were added in the scheme during 2017. These ranged from Canada to Ceuta in North Africa, from Mexico to Martinique and may more. SOTA is truly a world-wide program. Having helped define just one region of one association myself, I can understand the level of work involved and the scheme could not expand without a lot of work, done by a few people making this all possible.

Tom's fifth email shows a list of the all-time top 20 activators of the now over 5,900 registered. The table is by the number of QSOs made. Not surprisingly for a scheme that started in Europe, all but one of the 20 operators are from Europe but there is a US activator, George KX0R in there at number 10. Needless to say I'm no where to be seen in this list but I'm enjoying being part of the SOTA community none the less.

Have you climbed a hill taking your radio gear with you lately - if not, why not? All information about the SOTA scheme can be found on the web at www.sota.org.uk

WARMING UP FOR WINTER FIELD DAY


PAUL/ANCHOR: In some regions there's ice on the rooftops, snow on the ground and that can only mean one thing - it's time for Winter Field Day, as we hear from Jack Parker W9ISH, in this report courtesy of Amateur News Weekly.

JACK PARKER: That's right, Winter Field Day. It started in 2007 as a way to encourage hams around the world to dress up, set up and enjoy the beauty of operating outdoors in January. Well, if that idea leaves you cold there is always the indoor home station category or how about coffee, donuts and the warm confines of the local EOC of your radio group? Those are all possibilities. There are three categories: indoor, outdoor and home. The rules are similar to those for ARRL Field Day: operation will take place on all HF bands except for 12, 17, 30 and 60 meters. There will be no points for VHF, UF and satellite contacts. One well-known East Coast station has announced its intent to participate: W1AW will be warming the airwaves on January 27 and 28. Winter Field Day begins at 1900 UTC or 2 p.m. Eastern Time. According to the ARRL, the past nine Winter Field Day contests have drawn even more participation each year. So don't let this operating opportunity slip by.

A FAVORITE AMONG PREFIX HUNTERS IS BACK


PAUL/ANCHOR: For hams in Australia, Jan. 26 isn't just Australia Day, it's a day for an important call sign prefix, as we learn from John Williams VK4JJW.

JOHN'S REPORT: If you're on the air on Friday the 26th of January and log a contact with an Australian ham who has an AX prefix, you haven't stumbled upon some kind of historic "first" for a new license class for Australia. The story behind the prefix is historic in its own right. Radio amateurs have the opportunity to use it to commemorate Australia Day which marks the arrival of the First Fleet of British Ships at Port Jackson, New South Wales in Sydney in 1788. AX is much sought-after among prefix hunters and used by Australian amateurs on ANZAC day and World Telecommunication Day as well.

For non-hams the day will be marked by flying the national flag, setting off fireworks and welcoming immigrants who've become the newest Australian citizens.

Hams expect to be quite busy as always doing what they do best. The Wireless Institute of Australia is urging amateurs to feature the prefix "AX" instead of the usual "VK" on a special QSL card marking the day.

WORLD OF DX


In the world of DX, be listening for Rick NE8Z/HC1MD operating from Ecuador between January 20th and February 10th using callsigns HC1MD, HC1MD/2 and HC1MD/7 at various locations there. He will be operating at times from the Amazon Jungle and other times on the Pacific Ocean coastline. Send QSLs direct to K8LJG or via LoTW after the trip.

KICKER: BUILDING HOUSES, BUILDING HAMS

PAUL/ANCHOR: We end this week's report with a story of adventure and volunteerism. It comes to us from Down Under - and with this story, we welcome the newest addition to our Amateur Radio Newsline family, Robert Broomhead VK3DN.

ROBERT'S REPORT: Shane Lynd VK4KHZ, a radio amateur from Far North Queensland, has been doing quite a bit of building while on his annual holiday in the Solomon Island village of Busuone. For five weeks, he's worked as a volunteer, helping construct a guest house. He's also been installing underground electrical cable, diesel generators, water tanks and even a flushing toilet and a septic tank.

Shane has also been busy building something else in that small remote island village: an amateur radio community. He's been teaching a number of teenagers in the village how to operate on the air in the hopes they'll end up pursuing a license with the H44 prefix. In fact, they've been getting on the air on 6m under supervision and calling CQ.

The teens have been in good company for that: In whatever spare time he has, Shane has been operating as H44DA from his holiday home on most of the HF bands -- but mainly on 6 meters.

He writes on his QRZ page that he is always happy to recommend the village to visitors but warns the curious that there is no TV or internet. The area however is very ham-radio friendly he goes on to say and especially after his most recent visit which ends this month it may just end up a whole lot friendlier.

THURSDAY EDITION: Thankfully, the snow storm here was a fizzle, I got all of 1/2 inch of snow but as usual you could not find a gallon of milk or a loaf of bread for over 100 miles....I hear there is a roll call today on 75 meters. I do nothing for days and today I am going out with friends for the early bird special and will miss it again....

ARRL CEO Tom Gallagher, NY2RF, to Retire

ARRL’s chief executive officer for the past 2 years, Tom Gallagher, NY2RF, announced his retirement as CEO, as the ARRL Board of Directors prepares to meet January 19-20. He will step down on March 2. Gallagher, who had earlier advised ARRL President Rick Roderick, K5UR, of his intention to resign, expressed his gratitude to Roderick and the ARRL Board for giving him the opportunity to help guide the organization.

“It has been my great privilege to serve in this capacity for 2 years, and I am deeply grateful to the Board and President Rick Roderick, K5UR, for their support and encouragement,” Gallagher said.

President Roderick expressed appreciation for Gallagher’s contributions to ARRL. “The ARRL is in a transition to a new generation for Amateur Radio. Change doesn’t come easy,” Roderick said. “Tom helped us in taking that step forward, and for that we are very grateful for his service to the League and to Amateur Radio,” he said.

Gallagher, 69, cited recent changes included in the new federal tax law that made it unattractive for him to continue working in Connecticut, where ARRL is headquartered. The Board will evaluate and determine the next steps to take in a search for his replacement when it meets this week.

Among Gallagher’s chief accomplishments during his tenure as CEO were creating an enhanced level of professionalism and efficiency in the organization that represents more than 150,000 US Amateur Radio operators. Gallagher also oversaw a significant turnaround in the organization’s financial performance.

Licensed in Pennsylvania in 1966 as WA3GRF (later N4GRF in North Carolina), Gallagher is a member of the West Palm Beach Amateur Radio Group. He has described himself as “an incurable HF DXer and inveterate tinkerer” and credits his first visit to the Franklin Institute’s Amateur Radio station W3TKQ in 1963 for inspiring his interest in ham radio.

Amateur Radio led to an early career in broadcasting. He was a cameraman and technician with WGBH-TV in Boston, the CBS Television Network, and Metromedia’s WIP Radio in Philadelphia.

Gallagher joined ARRL following 3 decades as an international investment banker and financial services executive. His career has included senior leadership positions with JP Morgan Chase & Co and CIBC Oppenheimer & Co in New York, and with Wachovia Capital Markets in Charlotte, North Carolina. He has also served as an adjunct professor at the Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University and as CEO of the Secondary School Admission Test Board in Princeton, New Jersey. He has served on boards, both public and non-profit, including two NYSE companies; the NPR affiliate in Charlotte, North Carolina; the Executive Board of The PENN Fund at the University of Pennsylvania, and The International Center of Photography.

Department of Defense Interoperability Communication Exercise Deemed a Success

A November 2017 Department of Defense (DoD)-sponsored communications interoperability exercise involving Amateur Radio was a success, according to information received recently from US Army Military Auxiliary Radio System (MARS) Program Manager Paul English, WD8DBY. The November 4-6 drill, which focused on interoperability between DOD elements including MARS, other federal agencies, and the Amateur Radio community, simulated a coronal mass ejection (CME) event. Army and Air Force MARS organizations worked in conjunction with the Amateur Radio community, primarily on the 60-meter interoperability channels as well as on HF NVIS frequencies and local VHF and UHF, non-Internet linked Amateur Radio repeaters.

“Amateur Radio support for these DOD interoperability exercises continues to grow,” English said.

The Amateur Radio portion of the exercise kicked off with a high-power information broadcast on 60-meter channel 1 (5,330.5 kHz) from a military station on the east coast and the Fort Huachuca HF gateway station in Arizona. The high-power broadcast provided basic exercise information and requested that amateur stations make contact with MARS stations on 60 meters and provide county-by-county status reports for the 3,143 US counties and county equivalents, in order to gain situational awareness and to determine the extent of impact of the scenario. Radio amateurs also were given the opportunity to submit a reception report and receive a QSL card.

New for this exercise, planners divided the continental US geographically and assigned each region to one 60-meter channel, in order to make more efficient use of all five channels. Planners roughly divided the US into northeast, southeast, northwest, southwest, and central regions. Also new for this exercise, military planners incorporated a day-time informational broadcast on a DOD frequency, 13,483.5 kHz USB. The purpose of that broadcast was to extend the exercise outreach during the day to the amateur community and to provide exercise updates.

English said that of the 738 broadcast reception reports received, 494, or 67%, of them were from the 60-meter broadcast while the remaining 244 reports were for the 13-MHz broadcast. The 60-meter broadcasts were received by stations in Canada, Spain, and Switzerland, and reception reports came from several members of the Short-Wave Listening (SWL) community.

Nearly 2,000 Amateur Radio stations took part in the exercise, submitting 3,025 county status reports, nearly 1,300 of them unique. QSL cards for amateurs and SWLs who participated in this exercise are being processed and will be mailed in January.

“Leaders from the supported DOD headquarters as well as the chiefs of both the Army and Air Force MARS programs appreciated the nearly 2,000 Amateur Radio stations that trained during this exercise,” English said. — Thanks to US Army MARS Program Manager Paul English, WD8DBY, and The ARRL ARES E-Letter

WEDNESDAY EDITION: 8am and its snowing and 30° and less than .25 inch of snow, so far so good on Cape Ann, not to be confused with Cape Cod...... Daredevils.......band conditions on 20-40 leave something to be desired the last few days. ...About time the Navy took action.....

Do Shortwave ‘Numbers Stations’ Really Instruct Spies?
Unidentified radio broadcasts have been transmitting coded messages, using numbers for years.

OTTAWA, Ontario — “6-7-9-2-6. 5-6-9-9-0.” Tune across the shortwave bands (above AM/MW), and chances are you will come across a “numbers station.” There’s no programming to speak of; just a mechanical-sounding voice (male or female) methodically announcing seemingly random groups of single digit numbers for minutes on end.

Congratulations! You are now officially a spy-catcher, to the extent that you may have tuned into a spy agency’s “numbers station” transmitting one-way instructions to their minions worldwide.

Numbers stations are unidentified radio broadcasts that consist usually of a mechanical voice “reading out strings of seemingly random numbers,” explained Lewis Bush, author of “Shadows of the State” a new history of numbers stations and the spies who run them. “These are sometimes accompanied by music, tones or other sound effects.” He said. “There are also related stations broadcasting in Morse Code and digital modes.”

NO PARANOID DELUSION

Program formats aside, the common purpose of numbers stations is “to broadcast coded messages to spies in distant countries,” said Ryan Schaum. He is co-founder of Numbers Station Research and Information Center (NSRIC), a hobbyist group that reports on these signals at www.numbers-stations.com. According to Schaum, the “use of shortwave allows complete secrecy and makes it impossible to determine who the recipient is.”

In order to decode the message hidden within the numbers broadcast, “the recipient uses ‘one-time pad’ encryption, which cannot be decoded by anyone without the time pad key,” said Schaum. Printed on paper pads, the one-time pad key allows the recipient to decode the message just once, it is then discarded for a fresh key after every use, thus making the cipher literally unbreakable. “For these reasons, numbers stations are still used today.”   continued

NCVEC Question Pool Committee releases errata to new Technician Question Pool

The NCVEC Question Pool Committee has announced some errors in the 2018-2022 FCC Element 2 (Technician class) Question Pool released on January 8.

These changes have been made in the download files as of January 12:

T1F11 - Distractor A; change "They" to "The"; T4A01 - Change to correct answer; correct answer is D; T5B13 - Distractor A; change "GHZ" to "GHz"; T6A07 - Modified question. "What electrical component is usually constructed as a coil of wire?" T8C08 - Distractor A; change "VOIP" to "VoIP."

ARRL VEC teams are advised to check the NCVEC website at http://www.ncvec.org/ regularly for updates to the Question Pool, which may include errata and withdrawn questions. The new Element 2 Question Pool goes into effect on July 1, 2018.

TUESDAY EDITION: SUNNY AND 18°, AND 4-6" forecasted for tomorrow. Well this morning I will put the chains on the truck and install the plow...What exactly is the purpose of this web page?.I wonder myself many days, why the hell do I continue this page, its been over 15 years! It started as a joke by covering the 14275/313 hams who were in full war mode: jamming, music, extreme language, torturing and baiting Riley Hollingsworth, FCC Enforcer at the time.  It was outrageous and ended with many hams losing licenses, fines, etc.... most are now dead. If you listen you will still hear a few of the old timers on 14275/313. Rich- W2OTK was the ring leader out of the Carolina's...being on 20 meters, it had a world wide impact and did not make ham radio look to good.........Believe me, it made the 3910 crew on their worst day look like model students! The so called "cockroaches" of 3910 did not hold a candle to the 14313 crew. The FCC cracked down so hard, the frequency became useable again and I had nothing to report!   ...   So somehow I started listening on 75 meters and started to get acquainted with  a bunch from NH, ME, MA and added their good hearted antics to the page and actually added "real radio news" and topics. The word got out about this page and I started to get info from hams all over the country and occasionally overseas. Today the page gets over 1000-3000 hits per day....so I keep it going, I am semi-retired and have too much time on my hands and this fills in the spare time. I receive in upwards to 100 emails a day commenting on articles or offering articles and photo's....you know about the hidden photos I assume...click on the top header in a few different spots for  a daily treat. Also the "Mud Duck" ALC meter on the top of the page reveals a photo of hams who many of you know from the New England Area...Who is the mythical Mud Duck?  An operator who feels more is better in regard to his audio chain. Expensive microphone, 8 channel EQ, mike gain wide open, 5kc wide, total disregard to what his ALC meter is telling him or what hams are reporting to him...oblivious to reality but having a good time.....Every group has at least one Mud Duck.

....Of course the answer is R, its a stick shift pattern on a vehicle....This months Nuts and Volts magazine has an article titled 'Ham Radio in a Pinch - How can ham radio help you after disaster strikes? What technical bits and pieces are needed?' by Ward Silver - N0AX http://www.nutsvolts.com/magazine/article/ham-radio-in-a-pinch.The article covers several topics including Science, Service, Skill; Bands and Privileges; Digital Communications; Antenna Systems; Power Systems; The Radios and Accessories and Gettio postng a Ticket.
To read the article online they claim you need a subscription however I was able to close the login screen and the article was still displayed except for the last page.......

A Note to Members from ARRL President Rick Roderick, K5UR

In the last few weeks, the ARRL’s Board of Directors has been the subject of an organized misinformation campaign. It is being orchestrated by a group of hams, some of whom are well-intentioned but have been misled. This effort, which consists of a series of mischaracterizations, initially dealt with (1) the ARRL Board’s censure of an ARRL Director, and (2) some proposed revisions to ARRL’s Articles of Association and Bylaws that are likely to be considered at the upcoming ARRL Board meeting and which were circulated by a member of the Board. None of the proposed Article and Bylaw changes has yet been addressed by the Board of Directors. More recently, other equally erroneous and false statements have been made with respect to completely unrelated issues, in an effort to draw into question ARRL’s decision-making processes. The principal suggestion is that ARRL operates under some “cloak of secrecy.” The criticism is unfair and undeserved.

ARRL’s representative system of governance, which has worked exceptionally well in the advocacy and promotion of Amateur Radio and the interests of ARRL members for more than 100 years, is unchanged. And the legislative and other advocacy positions currently being pursued are critical to the long-term survivability of the Amateur Radio Service.

The ARRL Board does seek thoughtful, informed input on policy issues concerning Amateur Radio from its roughly 150,000 members. ARRL’s governance structure provides that regionally elected, volunteer directors will represent the interests of the members in their respective Divisions, working collectively and collegially within our Board to make policy and to advocate their constituents’ interests. ARRL’s Board members hold cabinet meetings and forums at hamfests and conventions, and they staff ARRL booths at hamfests and conventions in order to find out what interests and concerns you have as ARRL members. They take this feedback from you, and they come to Board meetings twice a year to make policy for the organization. They work together collegially to develop the best policy decisions. This structure presumes that the Board’s collective wisdom is far greater than that of any one Board member, and each Board member is obligated by our Articles and Bylaws to come to meetings with a good idea of what the members need and what is best for Amateur Radio as a whole.

As is the case with most large, national non-profit associations, ARRL Board meetings are not open to the public. It has always been that way, as a matter of necessity. That is because, at all such meetings, confidential issues such as spectrum protection, employee compensation, financial information, and FCC submissions are candidly discussed, and the members’ interests at those meetings are advocated by the Directors on a representative basis.

Unfortunately, it was necessary for the Board to take the highly unusual action of publicly censuring one of its members recently. The Board heard the allegations made by an ARRL member of what transpired at an Amateur Radio event; it heard reports from other amateurs who were there, and it heard all the information that the Director involved chose to present. Everyone had a chance to speak and to evaluate the presentations. The Board, in an 11 to 3 vote with one abstention, took action to protect the organization’s integrity based on the information presented. This process and procedure are what nonprofit associations have to be prepared to employ, and do employ, to maintain order within their organizations and to ensure that the interests of the affected Director are protected as well. This is not a procedure that any nonprofit organization would conduct publicly.

The ARRL Policy on Board Governance and Conduct of Members of the Board of Directors and Vice Directors has been drawn into question, probably as the result of the fact that the Board’s censure decision was based upon a violation of that policy by the Director involved. The Policy is intended to protect the democratic decision-making processes by which ARRL has operated effectively for so long, and to set forth principles to guide an organization’s decision making and the behavior of individual board members when acting on behalf of ARRL. When it was adopted by the Board a year ago, it was posted for ARRL members to read. The policy calls for honesty, integrity, transparency, confidentiality, and equity. The purpose of adopting such a statement formally is to provide employees, volunteers, and board members with guidelines for making ethical choices and to ensure that there is accountability for those choices.

When board members of a nonprofit adopt a code of ethics, they are expressing their commitment to ethical behavior. It is intended to protect the Board’s deliberations and to protect the staff from inappropriate actions by Board members. It seeks to preclude precisely the type of selective disclosures and unilateral and subjective characterizations of proposed Board actions that have happened recently. There is nothing at all insidious about the policy, which is subject to regular review and modification, as are all other ARRL organizational documents.

As to the criticism of the proposed Articles and Bylaws changes, the Board has not yet considered them. It may or may not adopt some or all of the changes recommended by its Executive Committee or by an individual Director. Any responsible Board of Directors regularly reviews, amends and updates its Articles and Bylaws. And ARRL member input is welcome on all such subjects. Indeed, the recommended Article and Bylaw changes were not considered to be Board confidential. The problem, however, is that it is not fair to members, or to the representative Directors who have yet to evaluate them collectively, to have the proposals mischaracterized or misrepresented.

ARRL Directors are volunteers. They are smart, dedicated radio amateurs who each devote thousands of hours per year of their own time to representing you as best they can.

To those who try to suggest that the Board has abandoned its obligation to the members in favor of the organization — you draw a distinction that doesn’t exist. The Board absolutely understands that the members are the organization. The members of ARRL are always best served by an informed Board that works together to make policy that is in the best interests of the organization. The divisive tactics that are being used now, commenced through disinformation and a lack of candor, are harmful not only to the organization, but to Amateur Radio operators everywhere, the good work of the ARRL staff, and the Service that we love so much.

Rick Roderick, K5UR, President

 

 



New England Hams you might run across on 39xx (secret frequency).........

K1TP- Jon....Editor of As The World Turns....
2017 HRO CHRISTMAS LUNCHEON
N1XW.....Mike-easy going, Harley riding kind of guy!
K1JEK-Joe...Easy going, can be found at most ham flea market ...Cobra Antenna builder..
KA1GJU- Kriss- Tower climbing pilot who cooks on the side at Hosstrader's...
W1GWU-Bob....one of the Hosstrader's original organizers, 75 meter regular, Tech Wizard!!!
K1PV- Roger....75 meter regular, easy going guy...
W1XER...Scott....easy going guy, loves to split cordwood and hunt...
WS1D- Warren- "Windy" - Bullnet
KB1VX- Barry- the piture says it all, he loves food!
KC1BBU- Bob....the Mud Duck from the Cape Cod Canal, making a lot of noise.
W1STS- Scott...philosopher, hat
connoisseur,
KB1JXU- Matthew...75 meter regular...our token liberal Democrat out of VT

KA1BXB-Don....75 meter Regular......residing on the Cape of Cod, flying planes and playing radio
KMIG-Rick....75 Meter Regular....teaches the future of mankind, it's scary!
K1PEK-Steve..Founder of Davis-RF....my best friend from high school 

K9AEN-John...Easy going ham found at all the hamfests
K1BXI- John.........Dr. Linux....fine amateur radio op ....wealth of experience...
K1BQT.....Rick....very talented ham, loves his politics, has designed gear for MFJ...
W1KQ- Jim-  Retired
Air Force Controller...told quite a few pilots where to go!
N1OOL-Jeff- The 3936 master plumber and ragchewer...
K1BRS-Bruce- Computer Tech of 3936...multi talented kidney stone passing ham...
K1BGH- Arthur, Cape Cod, construction company/ice cream shop, hard working man....
W1VAK- Ed, Cape Cod, lots of experience in all areas, once was a Jacques Cousteus body guard....
KD1ZY- Warren....3910 regular
N1IOM- Paul.....3910 test king....testing......always right....
N1YSU- Bob,  easy going, kind of like Mr. Rogers until politics are brought up then watch out...
K1BNH- Bill- Used to work for a bottled gas company-we think he has been around nitrous oxide to long .

 

Silent KeyWB1DVD- Gil....Gilly..Gilmore.....easy going, computer parts selling, New England Ham..
Silent KeyKB1CJG-"Cobby"- Low key gent can be found on many of the 75 meter nets.........
Silent KeyWB1AAZ- Mike, Antrim, NH, auto parts truck driver-retired

Silent Key W1OKQ- Jack....3936 Wheeling and Dealing......keeping the boys on there toes....
Silent Key W1TCS- Terry....75 meter regular, wealth of electronic knowledge...
Silent Key WIPNR- Mack....DXCC Master, worked them all!.. 3864 regular for many years...
Silent Key
WILIM- Hu....SK at 92... 3864 regular for many years...
Silent Key N1SIE- Dave....Loves to fly
Silent Key:
N1WBD- Big Bob- Tallest ham, at 6'10", of the 3864 group
Silent Key: W1FSK-Steve....Navy Pilot, HRO Salesman, has owned every radio ever built!
Silent Key: W4NTI-Vietnam Dan....far from easy going cw and ssb op on 14275/313
Silent Key:K1FUB-Bill- Loved ham radio........Ham Radio Ambassador!
Silent Key: K1GAR- John- Very colorful character!......self appointed "hambassador" by Gordon West.....
Silent Key: N1GXW-Frank-Mellow Mainer..........
Silent Key:W1JSH-Mort- Nice fellow to talk to on 3936 on the early afternoon session

Silent Key: K4WHO-Kerry-Mellow ham, professional musician, one of the nice guys on14313....